I’ve slowly been working on reorganizing my recipe index so there are more sub-categories and it’s easier to navigate, and I realized the side dish section is lacking. Poor neglected side dishes. Well, here’s another one to add to the list. Nothing quite says summer side dish like pasta salad!
Pasta salads are just perfect for BBQs, potlucks, and picnics. I grew up always having the one that came in the box – you know, with the seasoning packet and tri-colored noodles? I wonder if I would still enjoy that version. I made the mistake once of trying Spaghetti Os a few years ago and was so disappointed, because I remember loving them when I was little and they were just horrible.
Anyway, this pasta salad has a Latin twist with a creamy avocado dressing that I bulked up a bit with Greek yogurt. It’s packed with goodies like black beans, corn, red peppers, grape tomatoes, and red onions, and is very tasty, although I bet it would have been even better with some fresh cilantro on top. Yay for another side dish!
Pasta Salad with Avocado Dressing
1 pound whole wheat fusilli pasta
1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
3 cups cooked corn
2 cups chopped roasted red peppers
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
1 small red onion, finely chopped
2 avocados, halved, pitted, and peeled
1 6-ounce container plain nonfat Greek yogurt
1 garlic clove, minced
Juice of one lime
1 teaspoon salt
Prepare pasta according to package directions, drain, cool, and place in a large bowl along with the black beans, corn, red peppers, tomatoes, and red onion; mix well.
Place avocados, Greek yogurt, garlic, lime juice, and salt in a food processor and pulse for 1 to 2 minutes or until smooth. Pour dressing over pasta and mix well. Serve cold or at room temperature. Makes 12 servings.
Nutrition: 257 calories, 5.1g fat, 9.1g fiber, 9.4g protein per serving
Cost: $0.94 per serving